Happy Hour at Buenos Aires Bistro
At this point, we’ve been to so many happy hours in Coral Gables that they’re all starting to blend together. But Buenos Aires Bistro’s definitely sticks out. On the corner of Ponce de Leon Boulevard and Aragon Avenue, Buenos Aires Bistro offers a comfortable, relaxed happy hour setting. Their cushioned chairs and couches make it easy to lean back and forget the stresses of the day. If you’re not the lounge type, they also have regular tables around the corner on Aragon Avenue as well as inside the restaurant.
From 4 to 7 p.m. on weekdays, the restaurant offers 50 percent off drinks plus deals on bar bites. This includes half-off of my go-to drink, a spicy margarita, or the Spicy Mamacita as it’s called here. Made with tequila, passion fruit, fresh lime juice, jalapeno syrup and cilantro, this is a very refreshing cocktail. I’ve never had a spicy margarita with cilantro in it before, and it definitely made a difference.
Something that I’ve never seen on a happy hour menu is the hand-shaken daiquiri. While daiquiris are usually frozen, this one was not and tasted like a real cocktail instead of a slushy. There are only two ingredients in it: Flor de Caña rum and fresh citrus juice, garnished with a dried lime wheel. A drink that’s simple, yet succulent. Their happy hour deals also include half-off wine and beer if you don’t want a cocktail.
As for food, Buenos Aires Bistro’s bar bites are outstanding. If you’re only going to get one, it should be the prosciutto bruschetta: Tomatoes, basil, parmesan and prosciutto piled on top of a warm piece of bread. Arguably the best bruschetta I’ve ever had. If you’re going to get more than one thing (which you should), like any good Argentine restaurant, they have great empanadas. We ordered the ham and cheese, the spinach, and the chicken, but they also have beef and corn. The ham and cheese was my favorite, with warm cheese oozing out upon biting into it.
Our other advice: Get there early. The “lounge” area was filled before 6 p.m., and the restaurant inside began to fill up as the dinner hour approached.
Buenos Aires Bistro
180 Aragon Ave.